Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India]: Following his side’s six-wicket win over India in the final of ICC Cricket World Cup final, Australian skipper Pat Cummins said that he fell in love with the one-day format all over again with this World Cup and described the win as a “pinnacle of international cricket”.
Another heartbreak was added to the list of Indian fans as Men in Blue succumbed to Australia, led by a masterclass from Travis Head, which helped the Aussies lift their sixth World Cup title.
In the post-match press conference, Cummins said, “That is huge (The World Cup win), I think that’s the pinnacle of international cricket, winning a one-day World Cup. Especially over here in India, in front of a crowd like this. Yeah, that is huge. Yeah, it has been a big year for everyone, but our cricket team has been here in India, the Ashes, World Test Championship and top it off with this is just huge and these are the moments that you will remember for the rest of your life.”
“Maybe because we won, but I did fall in love with ODI again this World Cup. I think the scenario where every game really matters, it does mean a bit different to just a bilateral.
The World Cup’s got such rich history, I am sure it is going to be around for a long time. Yeah, there are so many wonderful games, so many wonderful stories within these last couple of months. So, I think there’s definitely a place (for ODI cricket),” he added.
Cummins admitted that he was nervous in the morning and it was an unforgettable experience seeing over 1 lakh fans dressed in India’s blue jersey.
“Yeah, I mean I always like to say I am pretty relaxed but I was a little bit nervous this morning you know just pacing around waiting for it to get started just seeing the sea of blue in the hotel getting nearer the ground and seeing the sea of blue, walking, making its way to the ground, all the cars parked with their selfie cameras out, you kind of knew you were walking into something pretty special. And then to walk out for the toss and just see 130,000 blue Indian shirts, it is an experience you will never forget. Awesome day and the good thing was they were not too noisy for most of it,” said Cummins.
Cummins said that the pitch played well and it was quite slow with no bounce.
“The pitch played pretty well actually, it was quite slow and basically no bounce, but I do not think the bounce was anything different to anywhere else in the tournament. It probably did not spin as much as I thought it would.
Yesterday it looked really dry, but it was quite firm today. Yeah, the wicket was fine really. And then the toss, we were kind of umming and ahhing right up until the toss really – but I thought you know half a chance of the wicket got better tonight and you know in a World Cup game you can make a mistake bowling and it does not really matter too much, but if you make a mistake batting and you are under pressure it can be fatal so I just felt like it was the right time to go out and have a bowl,” he added.
Cummins lauded Travis Head for his match-winning century said that credit must go to selectors and coaches for persisting with him despite the injury.
“Travis Head was phenomenal. I think I said it on stage, I mean I think a lot of credit should also go to Andrew McDonald and George Bailey, the selectors, to take a punt. He had a broken finger, a broken hand for the half of the tournament, but to keep him in the squad was a huge risk. And the medical team were fantastic, obviously, to get him into a place where he could perform. So that was a big risk. I think we could have been made to look really silly if that did not pay off, but you got to take those risks to win a tournament.
And Trav, the player we have seen in Test cricket, he just, he epitomized everything I want out of a cricket team. He takes the game on, he plays with a smile, he just puts the pressure right back onto the opposition and he’s just great fun to be around. So, I couldn’t be happier for Trav,” said Cummins.
On Virat’s wicket that he took, Cummins said that it was satisfying to deny him an opportunity to score another hundred.
“Yeah, I think so, yeah. Yeah, we did take a second in the huddle just to acknowledge the silence that was going around the crowd. Yeah, it just felt like it was one of those days where it was all made for him to score another hundred like he normally does and yeah that was satisfying,” he said.
The skipper said that playing white-ball cricket in India helped Australia a lot.
“I mean, in white ball cricket, you still do not get spinning wickets all that often, particularly in IPL. But for sure, it helps. I think I have said it a few times. Pretty much everyone in our eleven has probably played more white ball cricket in India in the last five or ten years than we have in Australia so – no doubt that helps,” he said.
Cummins said that he could not be prouder of his team’s performance over the last two years, which has seen them win the T20 World Cup title and World Test Championship too.
“Yeah, I mean I do not know, it is probably for others to judge that but yeah, couldn’t be prouder of the team for the last few years. We have had some tough series but we’ve won some amazing series as well and everyone stood up and we feel like we’ve got a great red ball team and the white ball team has won two trophies in the last few years so it’s, yeah, things are looking pretty rosy,” he added.
Coming to the match, Australia opted to bowl first and bundled out India for 240 in 50 overs. On a tough batting surface, skipper Rohit Sharma (47 in 31 balls, with four boundaries and three sixes), Virat Kohli (54 in 63 balls, with four boundaries) and KL Rahul (66 in 107 balls, with one four) posted important knocks.
Mitchell Starc (3/55) was the pick of the bowlers for Australia. Skipper Pat Cummins (2/34) and Josh Hazlewood (2/60) also bowled well. Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell got a wicket each.
In the chase of 241, India started off really well and had the Aussies down at 47/3. Knocks from Travis Head (137 in 120 balls, with 15 fours and four sixes) and Marnus Labuschagne (58 in 110 balls, with four boundaries) left the Indian team without answers and guided them to a six-wicket win.
Mohammed Shami took one wicket while Jasprit Bumrah took two wickets as well.
Travis was given the ‘Player of the Match’ for his century.